A few days ago I was on social media trolling one of the groups I am part of and one of the comments that came up was from a runner who was newly pregnant. She was upset because her doctor told her to stop running in her first trimester of pregnancy because it might “bounce the baby too much.” A little further down the thread another mama commented that she was told to “stop exercising” altogether by her physician. This was just the beginning of the comments I read. Honestly, they made me mad. I thought “how can healthcare providers miss the mark by so much and provide such bad information?” As a healthcare provider, mom and runner I can’t just stand by and let all of these amazing mamas down by not saying anything.
So here I am screaming: “IT DOESN’T HAVE TO BE THIS WAY!”
The research supports and encourages running and exercising during pregnancy. Once in a while a woman may have serious complications and need to stop, but this is uncommon. If this is the case they should follow the advice of their physician. However there are so many myths and so much misinformation when it comes to running during pregnancy and postpartum and it is about time it changed.
A year ago my colleague Dr. Blair Green and I decided we had enough! We had seen comments like these or heard our patients report similar stories all too often. So we set off on a journey to fill this HUGE knowledge gap for moms to be, moms, and healthcare providers. We started writing a book. We wanted to create a resource that answered all the questions we had when we were in their shoes, the questions we read on social media and the questions we hear from our patients regularly. We also wanted to create a resource for other healthcare providers not familiar with treating pregnant or postpartum runners. We believe our book does this.
In our book we have the collected the research, given practical tips about what to put in your stroller, what belts to buy for better support and there is even a whole section devoted to “myth busting.” We map out exercises you can do while you are healing and beginning to walk or run again. Many of these exercises are not just for women newly postpartum. They can help women who have 8,10 or even 15-year-olds but are still getting chronic injuries or having pelvic floor dysfunction. At the very end of the book we even include two return to running plans. In case you haven’t figured it out this book is going to be awesome!
When we began this journey we had no idea the amount of work we would put into this passion project. It took us over a year to put together all this amazing information. We wrote, re-wrote, edited over and over again. We debated what exercises were the most important to include, what topics would be helpful, how to balance the science and the human experience. Writing a book takes a long time. Writing a book that could seriously change women’s lives can be overwhelming! Now that our book is finished our goal is to reach as many women as possible. This means we will need help.
Go Ahead Stop and Pee: Running During Pregnancy and Postpartum will be available in a couple months for purchase.
But in the meantime we started a Kickstarter campaign to raise awareness and funds to get this resource in as many female runners hands as possible. If you support the campaign you will get a book and/or exercise videos to go with it. The money we raise is to publish the book, pay for publicity and everything we have to do to make the best product as possible.
We have been told that there is nothing like this available in the market right now- which is insane! Since launching the campaign 8 days ago we already have had 82 backers and raised $4700, which is 47% of our goal. We are incredibly grateful and in awe of the people that have given and supported us thus far. We have a total of 30 days (21 days left) to raise $10,000. Kickstarter is all or nothing so if we don’t reach our goal we get $0. Please help us help other women. We are a tribe and need to stick together. It's time we had these resources available to take away the fear and anxiety around pregnancy and postpartum.
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